Tag Archives: library

Get Over Yourself!

Hey, all. Suze here. Welcome.

Last night I attended a talk by a famous author at our local library. (I was horrified by the poor turnout, despite quite a bit of publicity, but that’s the subject of another post).

Now at the same time this talk was scheduled, a writers’ group was also meeting informally in another part of the library. And when I say “writers’ group,” I mean a group of people who get together once or twice a month and exchange pages and discuss each other’s work. The librarian in charge of the event approached the group to let them know that a New York Times bestselling author was speaking. Great opportunity, right? They could come in and ask questions and learn about the writing process and the publishing industry from someone who had achieved great success.

And not a one of them came.

I’m not kidding. They stayed huddled in their little group, apparently too wrapped up in themselves and their “art,” to meet someone who has achieved what I’ll bet each of them wants: publication.

Now I’m not knocking small writers’ groups. If I had not found the guts to walk into one a few years ago, I wouldn’t have met J Monkeys and Casey Wyatt and PJ Sharon, and I wouldn’t have a completed manuscript and a couple more in progress, and I wouldn’t be blogging to you from the Seven Scribes today. But there came a time when we realized we needed more than we could get from each other if we wanted to be published, and that’s when we rushed our local RWA chapter, even though we’re not all writing romance.

It ain’t all about the art. (Well, for some people maybe it is, but you’ve still got to get it published somehow) And it ain’t all about the genre, either. Good, sellable writing is, well, good sellable writing, and it doesn’t matter if it’s romance, mystery, YA, sci-fi, paranormal, or even (spoken in a hushed tone) literary. We’ve all got plenty to learn from each other. In fact, I’d argue that exposing ourselves to different genres and styles of writing makes whatever we’re working on fresher and stronger. As the teenaged Crown Prince of Hardydom is so fond of telling me, “Don’t judge.”

How about you? Any missed opportunities you want to admit to? Secret biases you want to come clean about (the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, LOL!)? If you don’t feel like confessing, tell us about a great speaker you’ve heard.

My Library

Hidey-Ho Scriblers!  J Monkeys here.  Happy Saturday.  This week, I want to take on a subject that has been near and dear to my heart for a long time.  My hubby has his Man-Cave; I have wanted a Library.  In my mind, this would a glorious sanctuary, away from the demands of family and a place where I could actually have access to all my stuff.

When we bought our house almost exactly 8 years ago, I knew just which room would become my dream space.  But in 2004, my sister slept in it, while we remodeled her wing.  Then it was kind of a junk room for 2005.  When hubby had knee surgery and couldn’t hobble down to his basement man cave in 2006, we moved all his computer equipment up to the “library”.  More junk settled in.

By 2007, I was in organization mode – I bought a beautiful brick-red paint and slapped up at least four coats to cover the yellow walls.  Then I decided I wanted crown molding.  YIKES!  That was a disaster!  Hanging dental crown molding on the popcorn ceiling of a 50-year-old (settled and therefore not square!) house should be avoided at all costs!  It took forever and half a ton of Spackle but, “Done is better than perfect” I always say.  My crown molding maybe crooked and blotchy, but at least it’s up.

Just when I was finishing up that horrific project, we decided to adopt children and the Department of Children and Families informed me that since no adults had bedrooms on the second floor, the temporarily foster children couldn’t either.  My beautiful brick-red room became a baby room.  It’s surprising how many baby bedding sets coordinate with blood red…but perhaps that’s an issue for another day.

The adoption was finalized in 2009 and once the kids were really and truly ours, we could move them to the nice bedroom upstairs, which of course had become a junk room.  Sigh.  I’m telling you, we have filled 3 big dumpsters in the last few years getting rid of stuff (and a roof and a snow-busted shed – it’s not like we were hoarders…).  In 2010 my sister-in-law painted a wonderful  mural on the kids new wall and by summer’s end we moved them up.  That was 18 months ago.

Since then, we tried housing my sister’s immense movie collection in the library (where else would it go?) but it took up too much space and the children were touching the movies.  A major no-no in my sister’s book  So we moved the movie collection up to our one remaining junk room and locked the door to secure the goods.  One final trip to Ikea last week finished lining my walls with beautiful (and cheap!) white Billy bookshelves.  Don’t you just love the funky names Ikea gives their stuff?  If you haven’t been to an Ikea, bring a wad of cash (so you don’t spend too much – it’s easy to do) and check it out.  In Connecticut – there’s one in New Haven – absolutely worth the drive.  And have lunch there – the food is yummy and cheap.

So, after much ado, here it is.  My new writing and crafting space.  A space that is all mine.  Mine, mine, mine!  I’ll be cranking out those books now!

writing desksome books